County of Renfrew Paramedic Service
An Honour Guard is a group that provides special services to current and past members of the Paramedic service.
Honour Guards have been in existence in Paramedic Services for about 20 years, the first was established in Toronto. Paramedic Services gradually adopted the idea of having an Honour Guard and their role varies on each Service’s requirements, defined by their Chief. Currently, there are 40 registered Paramedic Honour Guards across Canada.
Six years ago, two Paramedics attended one of the first Honour Guard meetings in Toronto. It took time, dedication and the hard work of Dave Ostroski and Richard Slater to assemble and organize this voluntary group of individuals. When their stunning customized uniform design made it’s debut, The County of Renfrew Paramedic Service Honour Guard established the Fall of 2013. They belong to the Alliance of Canadian Paramedic Honour Guards, and attend their yearly conference.
When an Honour Guard is tasked with a duty, it is called “standing up”. Traditionally, the main role of an Honour Guard is to be involved at the Funeral of a Line of Duty death. The Paramedic Honour Guard will establish a vigil during the visitation, escort the spouse of the deceased, and are called upon to be pallbearers or will salute the deceased at the exit of the Church following Mass.
The Honour Guards presence at a Funeral of a retired or ailing Paramedic often isn’t traditional, but personalised.
Honour Guards also participate in Parades, Line of Honours, Municipal gatherings, Memorial Services and more. In 2016, the County of Renfrew Paramedic Service Honour Guard arranged a Line of Honour for all the Paramedics who received their 10-year Service Award.
The Guard is currently made up of 12 members and always looking to grow. They are considered a not-for-profit- and are apart of a Municipally financed service. It requires a significant time commitment as members pride themselves on their quality of skills and presentation. At one of the Alliance Conferences, it was decided the Guards would adopt the Canadian Forces Drill Manual as a mandatory skill, uniting and defining them. This requires precision drill that the Honour Guard meets monthly to practice.
The County of Renfrew Paramedic Service Honour Guard does it’s best to ensure they are present at all Funeral Services of those who are apart, one way or another, of the Paramedic Service. For more information, to inform us of a death, or to request our presence, please don’t hesitate to contact us.